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Premier 100 IT Leader profile: James Robertson

Premier 100 IT Leader profile: James Robertson

In today's 24/7 news cycle, reporters at media outlets use all kinds of wireless gadgets to gather and report news and communicate with the newsroom.

Turner Broadcasting System's James Robertson, 39, vice president of technology infrastructure and broadcast transmissions, recognized the bring-your-own-device trend six years ago and has worked to keep the company ahead of the technology curve by allowing employees to use their own devices to do their jobs. Personal devices like iPhones were incorporated into the IT infrastructure as early as 2008.

TBS adopted what it calls an "IT Anywhere" strategy and set up an ITIL infrastructure that allows employees to log on to the corporate wireless infrastructure using any device from anywhere in the world.

"At first, we were thinking this could really complicate things," such as the help desk, says CIO Dan Darling. "But James has been instrumental in [developing] employee self-service portals where people can self-authenticate. Our employees are very happy."

The biggest challenge, Robertson says, is staying ahead of the tech curve. "We have to be ahead of that demand," he explains. "In the absence of a [corporate] solution, people are clever enough to build their own solutions."

"The company has realized the true importance of having IT as a component in the whole analysis life cycle," Robertson says. "It's no longer just a business life cycle, but what is it going to take for us to be successful from a technology standpoint? That's a big change."

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